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Graham cracker Review
I stumbled across your website after googling graham crackers (what are they? I asked). It's a lovely website - I never dreamed there'd be an entertaining and informative forum such as this where I can indulge my unhealthy interest in packaged things in the biscuit line.
Having spent a little time doing just that, I have just had the life changing experience of finally finding out what graham crackers are... with actual photos and everything!
I live in Australia, and for at least 30 years (that's about three quarters of my life) I have wondered (quite often, quite regularly) what the hell a graham cracker square could be. I've come across so many recipes calling for GCQs - trying various substitutes, I knew in my heart that none of them were quite it.
I've quizzed American friends, but they're all so complacent about it (and frankly, not interested in cross-cultural biscuit exchange), giving vague answers like, You use them to make cheesecake bases (well, derr...).
I hardly know how to thank you...
|Nicey replies: Glad to promote international biscuit understanding.|
Graham cracker Review
First let me say how much I adore the site. I read each day at my desk with my cup of tea (PG Tips) and biscuit of the day. As engineer I am a bit regimented so I have a biscuit of the day. Monday's are ginger nut day as I find the zing exactly right to shock me awake from my lazy weekend but I digress. I too am an American but having been introduced by my grandmum to digestive biscuits at an early age, I always preferred them to our graham cracker (except on S'mores at GirlGuide Camp). I am writing because I am concerned at your lack of sleep due to your wonderment of the straight edges and un-rolled ends on graham crackers. I would not want a lack of sleep and slumber to interfere with your Christmas Biscuit Review duties nor the round of holiday functions with Wifey and the Younger Staff. Graham crackers are indeed baked on a large single sheet then, while still warm and pliable, the crackers are cut to form the long rectangles you and Wifey took from the box. The serrated divisions and "steam holes" are formed in the last stage before baking. The ends/left overs are used to make graham cracker crumbs for baking or handed out to Girl Guides on tour munch on delightfully whilst visiting the gift shop at the biscuit factory. So fear not the waste and go back to bed.
|Nicey replies: Dear Snddsn,
Thanks for that info. Actually I've just got up.
Graham cracker Review
I just finished reading your Graham cracker page. Add me to the list of Americans who had no idea what a Digestive was [until I read about it on your web site] but had known about Graham crackers for well over half a century. Graham crackers were a staple of my youthful diet and a treat through middle years and into my 'rusty' years. They are also a staple for my grand kids. They are the ever-ready between meal snack which keeps little ones quiet.
Graham crackers come in a couple varieties that I know of. Plain, as pictured on your web page, and with a cinnamon-sugar topping on one side. I personally prefer the cinnamon-sugar ones. I have not seen the apple and chocolate ones you mention... but I have never looked for them either.
Graham crackers are one of the three ingredients of Smores, or S'mores. Smores is a contraction of the words some more, as in I want s-more. Smores are almost a 'necessity' while sitting around the evening campfire when camping.
Do a web search for more Smores web pages.
While the photo [on your web page] of the Nabisco Grahams box shows jam on a Graham cracker, I do not recall ever seeing anyone eating that combination.
Graham crackers make a good topping when squished in the hand and sprinkled over a bowl of ice cream. They add a nice random crunchiness to the ice cream and a flavor contrast of grain to milk product.
My favorite topping for Graham crackers is about an equal mix of peanut butter and honey. A small round bottom tea cup or coffee cup makes a nice mixing container. I take a few knife fulls of peanut butter and scrape it into the cup by dragging the knife blade across the cup lip. Alternately, you can put a spoon full in the cup, but then you wind up using your finger to scrape the peanut butter out of the spoon, and then the spoon to scrape off your finger. Once the peanut butter is in the cup, I add honey using my eyeball to 'measure' when there is about an equal amount of peanut butter and honey. Then stir it with the knife until it is well blended. You can then add more of either ingredient to suit your taste, or make the consistency spreadable. Once mixed, it is spread atop a Graham cracker. I usually have milk with it, but tea or coffee would do as well... depending on your personal preference. Smooth peanut butter works better for spreading. No peanut pieces for the spreading knife to bounce over. But crunchy peanut butter will work too... if you like the spread layer thicker.
Both my kids and grand kids like to dunk Graham crackers in a glass of milk or a cup of hot chocolate.
I followed a link from Andy Edward's Music web site to visit your web site.
Curiosity question: What kind of tea do you Brits prefer? Unless I am mistaken, if one orders 'tea' at a restaurant here in the US, you will get black pekoe as the 'standard tea'. However many places now bring a bread basket style container with an assortment to choose from. Just curious if you ordered a 'cup of tea', what kind it would be. Is there a 'standard tea' which is usually served in the UK?
Spokane Washington USA
|Nicey replies: Hi Leo,
Thanks for that very informative mail about Graham Crackers. We had smores explained to us the other evening by an American girl, whilst we were down in London for the evening. We repaid her kindness by forcing her to eat a several things she had never encountered before including Jaffa Cakes and Tunnocks Wafers. She seemed to enjoy it although she couldn't finish the Tunnocks so I made her wrap it up again and pop it in her bag so she could have it in the morning.
As to what tea we drink, well that really comes down to brands, but you are essentially right about it being standard tea. All the leading everyday teas are blends of various black teas from India, Sri Lanka and Kenya. These are carefully blended to give each brand its own particular taste, although they are all broadly similar. The leading brands are Tetley, PG Tips, TyPhoo, Yorkshire Tea and so forth. The supermarket chains also have their own blends with Sainsbury's and the Coop both being highly regarded. As you probably know all our teas are designed for drinking with milk. I suppose that if you mixed up some Celyon, Assam and Kenyan teas in the right proportions you could create something fairly close to any of our well known brands. The trick is to blend the tea to suit the water. It was common to ship water from Manchester to the tea plantations in India so the tea could be blended correctly before it ever left there.
If you ever visit the UK you simply just have to ask for 'tea' and that's what you'll get. A couple of Digestives wouldn't go a miss either.